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2006

Michigan Law Review

Critical race theory

Articles 1 - 1 of 1

Full-Text Articles in Legal History

Race Nuisance: The Politics Of Law In The Jim Crow Era, Rachel D. Godsil Jan 2006

Race Nuisance: The Politics Of Law In The Jim Crow Era, Rachel D. Godsil

Michigan Law Review

This Article explores a startling and previously unnoticed line of cases in which state courts in the Jim Crow era ruled against white plaintiffs trying to use common law nuisance doctrine to achieve residential segregation. These "race-nuisance" cases complicate the view of most legal scholarship that state courts during the Jim Crow era openly eschewed the rule of law in service of white supremacy. Instead, the cases provide rich social historical detail showing southern judges wrestling with their competing allegiances to both precedent and the pursuit of racial exclusivity. Surprisingly, the allegiance to precedent generally prevailed. The cases confound prevailing ...